Things to know before choosing a Hearing Aid
Dear Dr. Paulose
My Father is 69 years old and lives with my mother in a flat in Trivandrum. Myself and my sisters and families live in California, USA. We find it extremely difficult to communicate over the phone to my father. My mother says he can\’t hear a thing and she has to shout all day and getting throat pain. He feels shy to wear a hearing aid and not even give it a try. Please give an appointment with you and please, please do convince him to have a good quality hearing Aid. We are aware that, now imported hearing aids are available there in Trivandrum and bringing hearing aid from here is of no use and my not work for him. Actually few years ago one of my sisters took a hearing aid from here, but he couldn\’t tolerate it.
Awaiting your response
About Hearing Aids
Choosing the right hearing aid for a deaf person is very important. Just bringing a hearing aid from abroad is a thing of the past. Now advanced imported hearing aids of high digital quality is available more the same cost abroad.
Before going for a hearing Aid, one must have some idea about hearing aids in general and about deafness. Many types of hearing aids exist. So which is best for you?
Find out what to consider when choosing a hearing aid.
Consult an ENT Surgeon (an ear, nose, and throat specialist), because many hearing problems can be corrected medically. If you have ear pain, drainage, excess earwax, hearing loss in only one ear, sudden or rapidly progressive hearing loss, or dizziness, it is especially important that you see an ENT surgeon.
After an Ear examination the surgeon will help you obtain a hearing assessment from an audiologist. An Audiogram is done. The results of these tests will indicate the degree of hearing loss, the type of loss (conductive or sensorineural).
Conductive Hearing Loss: A hearing loss is conductive when there is a problem with the ear canal, the eardrum, and/or the three bones connected to the eardrum. This causes a mechanical (conductive) blockage, preventing the full energy of the sound from reaching your inner ear. Two common reasons for this type of hearing loss are excess wax in the ear canal or fluid behind the eardrum. Medical treatment or surgery may be available for these and other forms of conductive hearing loss.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss (Nerve Deafness): A hearing loss is sensorineural when it results from damage to the inner ear (cochlea) or auditory nerve, often a result of the aging process and/or noise exposure, but also may be secondary to head trauma, systemic illness or infection, or inheritance. Sounds may be unclear or too soft. Sensitivity to loud sounds may occur (loudness discomfort). Medical or surgical intervention cannot correct most sensorineural hearing losses, but hearing aids may help you reclaim some sounds one is missing as a result of nerve deafness.
Where does one can purchase hearing aids?
Many hearing Aid dispensers are available in the city but most sellers won\’t dispense them unless the buyer has first received an ENT Surgeons evaluation, so you will need to see your doctor before you purchase a hearing aid.
How much it cost?
Hearing aids should be custom-fit to your ear and hearing needs. Buying on line hearing aids typically cannot be custom-fit.
Hearing aids vary in price according to style, features, and local market prices. Price can range from Rs 7000 -Rs 1.5Lakhs for a programmable, digital hearing aid- depending upon the model and the brand… Purchase price should not be the only consideration in buying a hearing aid. Product reliability and customer service can save repair costs and decrease frustration of a malfunctioning hearing aid.
There are several styles: Hearing aids generally share three basic common components:
and An ear mold, if there is one.
and A volume control area.
and A place for the hearing aid battery.
The microphone of the hearing aid takes the sound and sends it to an internal processor that amplifies the sound, before passing it on to the wearer of the hearing aid through the plastic tubing into the ear mold.
Types of Hearing Aids
and Behind-the-ear (BTE) aids go over the ear and are connected with tubing to custom-fitted earpieces.
and Open fit receiver-in-the-ear (RITE) aids are a newer design, and while still placed over the ear, they are extremely small and nearly invisible.
and In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids fill the entire bowl of the ear and part of the ear canal.
and Smaller versions of ITEs are called half-shell and in-the-canal (ITC).
and The least visible aids are completely-in-the-canal (CIC).
and In addition, some hearing aids can be implanted, and for those unable to wear a traditional hearing aid, bone anchored hearing aids are available.
Things to remember
The best hearing aid for you depends upon your particular hearing loss and listening needs, the size and shape of your ear and ear canal, and the dexterity of your hands. Many hearing aids have tele-coil “T” switches for telephone use and public sound systems.
Other options, such as FM systems and Bluetooth devices in conjunction with hearing aids, may provide the best benefit for some patients.
Ask about future service and warranty coverage for your hearing aids.
Go for a Trial
The hearing aids will be fitted for your ears. Then, while wearing them, you will be tested for word understanding in quiet and in noise, and for improvement in hearing tones. Real ear measurements may also be done, which determine how much gain your hearing aids give you. Next, you will receive instruction about the care of your hearing aids and other helpful strategies.
To get used to the Hearing Aid
Start using your hearing aids in quiet surroundings, gradually building up to noisier environments. Then eventually work up to wearing your hearing aids all waking hours. Be patient and allow yourself to get used to the aids and the “new” sounds they allow you to hear.
For Appointment– call 0471-2334561/62/63/64, 6452020,407822 Fax-0471-2330925